National Federation of the Blind of Florida

Board Meeting Minutes

May 22, 2009


The meeting was called to order at 8:20 PM.

Present were:

Kathy Davis - President

Dwight Sayer - First Vice President

Dan Hicks - Second Vice President

Sherri Brun - Secretary

Gloria Hicks - Treasurer

Sabrina Deaton - Board Member

Betty McNally - Board Member

Sherrill O'Brien - Board Member.


Absent was Gina Minichiello - Board Member, due to recovering from surgery.


The minutes of May 13, 2009 were approved as corrected.


Kathy Davis introduced John and Cindy Paré our National Rep and his wife.  John is director of strategic initiatives for the NFB.  Jack Fox, our guest talking book readerwill arrivelater this evening.  Joyce Hildreth, the director of DBS as will as several other DBS officials are attending the convention and will answer questions regarding new DBS policies.  The officers and board members introduced themselves.  John Paré introduced himself.  He mentioned that we have cargo on the shuttle, which is trying to land safely.  NFBF state board members introduced themselves.   These members included: Sabrina Deaton Public Relations coordinator, Newsline director and state board member and   newly elected president of the greater Daytona Beach chapter; Betty McNally Dade County president and legislative chair; Dwight Sayer, NFBF first Vice-President, president Greater Orlando Chapter;   Sherri Brun secretary NFBF; Sherrill OBrien, Braille Coordinator for Florida, President of FLAGDU; Dan Hicks second vice-president NFBF; and   Gloria Hicks treasurer.  Audience members introduced themselves.


The Treasurer's Report was given.  Amounts may have changed, but the current bank statement does not reflect the current status due to expenditures occurring after the current statement was issued.  Gloria went on to explain the amount of money NFBF spends to run our state convention.  We have a $7,000 grant from the Imagination Fund for our FPOBC division, which makes it possible to have a nationally known Braille specialist and mobility specialist, Sandra Lewis and Dr.  Ruby Riles attend our convention.  If money is left in the parents' grant, it is used to send parents to our national convention.  We also give out scholarships.  We also pay convention expenses for specific people who attend.  We also negotiate for contracts with the hotel.  We are spending $1300 on sound for this convention.  $9,000 in food.  With the help of the Jacksonville chapter, we will attempt to stream the convention.


Kathy thanked David EVANS and Pat Hayes for their efforts in hosting the convention.  She also thanked Daytona members Lynda Lasseter and Gerry Trout for their invaluable help.  Kathy Davis also reported the death of the wife of our St.  Lucy chapter president Charlotte Miller.  Carl Miller in the past has been our auctioneer and will soon be moving up north.  Holly SNYDER lost her husband Also last week.  Holly will continue to be vice-president of East Hernando chapter.


Kathy requested that everyone be there for the breakfast at 6:45, though breakfast will not be served until 7.  John and Cindy Paré were invited and will attend.  We will discuss the challenges of running our chapters.


Gloria gave an overview of our pre-convention meeting with the hotel sales people and department managers.  Some guide dog users are taking their dogs to the courtyard out front.  We are to encourage people to take their dogs to the designated relief area.  Microphones and sound equipment rental was discussed. 

185 people are pre-registered.  There are now approximately 2110 people registered.  The officers and board members guide but do not direct and try to involve all members so they too can become leaders.  Sherri mentioned that she had taken calls from people who are interested in attending some or all of the convention.  She thinks we will be pleasantly surprised at our attendance.

The student luncheon was mentioned.  We were encouraged to have all students attend the luncheon Sunday at 12:15.


Sherrill announced the guide dog meeting to take place tomorrow.  Parents were also encouraged to attend the meeting.  We will have a representative from 1-800-petmeds.  They are offering a discount on their website.  We will also be amending the constitution.


Kathy discussed the parents division, since Debby Brackett is at the parents' reception.  Debby will be stepping down as president.  There are two people running for the head of the parents division.  They will be held tomorrow afternoon.  Membership is $10 per person and $20 per family.


Kathy discussed the absence of our Merchants' Division and her desire to see it revitalized.  NFBF will be working toward the end.


The technology seminar will take place at 2 with Jim Ellsworth.


The new products for the blind seminar was discussed.  It is the only seminar at that time from 10 to 12.


Sabrina will talk about what is new with Newsline.  Sabrina will be using the Wi-Fi connection to give out account codes.  The Seminar is at 2 PM in the Palm Theater.


Betty McNally gave the report for the Emergency Preparedness Seminar to take place at 4 PM.  An official from the agency for preparedness will talk about different areas in which we need to be prepared.  The membership seminar will also be held at 4 PM.  Mark Tardif, Sherrill OBrien and Kathy will be facilitating that seminar.  Gina Minichiello, along with Mark and Sherrill attended a Leadership Seminar at the National Center for the Blind.


The scholarship report was given.  Scholarship recipients include Alicia Beattencourt with Daytona, Dariel Morales, Miami, but has moved to Palm Beach and Yasen Angelov, member of Greater Orlando Chapter.  The awards are $1250, by 1500 and $2,000.  We will also give chapter tributes of those chapters who contributed to the scholarship fund.


The nominating committee will meet Monday morning at 7 AM.  It will be comprised of chapter presidents and/or alternates.  The meeting is a closed meeting.  Joe Minichiello discussed the senior concerns meeting.  There will possibly be a senior's division organized.


Reception, auction and door prizes were discussed by Dwight.  Bring all auction items to registration desk or to room 726.  Hotel has donated a weekend at the Embassy Suites Boca.  Items will be on display at 7 PM.  After the auction we will have games hosted (Betty McNally and Pat Hayes.  We will divide up into teams and play outburst.  Palm Beach Post will be here to cover our convention.  There will be a Judo demonstration and Cooking without Looking.


The meeting was adjourned at approximately 10 PM.


Respectfully Submitted:


Sherri Brun, Secretary

National Federation of the Blind of Florida


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